Hundreds of new employment opportunities within the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector are expected to be created this year amid significant private investments that were enabled through government’s strategic policies.
This was revealed by Senior Minister within the Office of the President with responsibility for Finance Dr Ashni Singh on Monday as he presented the 2024 national budget.
Dr Singh spoke highly of the BPO industry, which he noted has created more jobs than most other sectors in the country.
“…in particular, jobs that are especially popular with the female workforce and that provide an entry point into the world of work in a technology-based environment,” he expressed.
Recognising the sector’s job creation potential, Dr Singh said the government will continue to support the development and expansion of the sector in Guyana.
He highlighted that since the liberalisation and creation of a competitive telecommunications sector, mere months after the PPP/C Government resumed office in 2020, there has been an extremely significant reduction in the cost of bandwidth, allowing for the expansion of the call centre industry and the promise of job creation.
“In 2019, call centres paid US$950 per megabit of data and today that price is US$50 or lower, thereby lowering the cost of bandwidth by approximately 95 percent, making communication cost in Guyana amongst the most competitive in the call centre industry,” the Finance Minister disclosed.
As a result, he remarked, that since resuming office in 2020, almost 2,000 BPO jobs have been created.
“In 2023, in line with our government’s agenda to ensure development and job creation across the geographic spread, four new call centre shells were constructed, two each in Essequibo and Berbice, with all facilities expected to be operational in 2024,” he revealed, adding that this direct intervention by the government has the potential to create 800 additional jobs within the BPO sector, with the potential to scale to 1,600.
Further, facilities at Enmore and Tuschen are being upgraded with each having the capacity to employ an additional 300 persons.
Additionally, in 2024, the government will construct two new call centres in Region Five (Mahaica-Berbice), with the capacity to create an additional 800 jobs.
“The Government will continue to work with the industry to position Guyana as a preferred BPO destination,” Dr Singh said.
In December 2023, the Housing and Water Ministry, through the Central Housing and Planning Authority, invited bids for the construction of two brand-new call centres in Mahaicony and Hope Town, Region Five.